THE PANDEMIC-REFLECTIVE BLOGGING CONTINUES….
Here we go… everyday during Week 7 of #socialdistancing due to the #COVID19 pandemic… I am rolling out a series of blogs as I work towards my “non-teaching” term in my one-year contract. I am so thankful for my friends who help guide my thinking and provide unconditional support. I am incredibly lucky to have an amazing network of critical friends. I would not be here without you. I’ve been blogging lately to unpack some ideas to understand my trajectory and next steps. The pandemic and being HOME ALONE have graciously provided the opportunity to reflect. What I’ve realized is, it’s almost next to impossible to delve into research when teaching 80% of the time and 20% of my time is dedicated to service. What I am grateful for is, research opportunities do present themselves to me, so this is the time to delve in. I’ve got 4-months. Before I do, I need to FACE MY FEARS. I love this photo of the wontons I made the other day to depict my thinking process for this blog. I have a goal (i.e. make wontons). I tried out different folding techniques (i.e. tinkering and playing). I assessed what worked and didn’t work (i.e. choose a strategy or direction). Then, I just get the job done (i.e. completion).
an unpleasant emotion caused by the belief that someone or something is dangerous, likely to cause pain, or a threat.
Fear. I hope this feeling goes away over time. I felt this way when I was writing my dissertation. Some would call it, “imposter syndrome” but writing for public consumption (unlike blogging, I guess) is an act of vulnerability. Brene Brown says, “Vulnerability is the birthplace of innovation, creativity, and change.” Agreed. To research, you have to put yourself out there and BE SEEN. It’s super scary and I’m not sure why it matters so much to me, but this is the lesson. “What’s the greatest risk? Letting go of what people think – or letting go of how I feel, what I believe, and who I am?” Thank you Brene Brown. I’m need to be intentional about this and be true to self. I’m even nervous about writing this because I am facing my fear as I write this blog. I am an extroverted thinker and blogging helps me to make sense of what I am thinking and feeling. I need to be true to myself, let go of what people think, and delve into what I love and am interested in.
the capacity to recover quickly from difficulties; toughness.
I can only get better by putting myself out there, trying, reflecting, accepting and discerning feedback, make revisions, and try again. Embrace Kolb’s EXPERIENTIAL LEARNING CYCLE. It’s cyclic. The more I write, the more I love it. I am developing my practice and acquiring the goods internal to the practice. Writing, like “vulnerability sounds like truth and feels like courage. Truth and courage aren’t always comfortable, but they’re never weakness” – Brene Brown. It’s never comfortable, so get used to it. I am safe. I am worthy. I am strong. Ultimately, everything that I do is working towards a common goal. I can’t look back. As my friend said to me, you don’t want to be EATING CROW. I had no idea what that was so I had to Google it. Honestly, it doesn’t sound very good. I need to keep venturing forward and lean on my critical friends lift me up.
the state or quality of being dedicated to a cause, activity, etc.
an engagement or obligation that restricts freedom of action.
I am at a strange time in my life, personally and professionally. Nothing is certain and I am committed in different ways, to different people, for different reasons. For the last couple of months, I’ve been wrestling with the idea of COMMITMENT. What does that mean and what does it look like? Based on these two definitions, I can see why I am struggling. When I look at things at face value, it’s difficult for me to BE DEDICATED and I resist the idea of RESTRICTED FREEDOM. I love my autonomy and I am currently on a term contract. It’s tough to jump into anything that is research related. Last year at this time, I was deep in uncertainty (i.e. teaching online, contract renewal, and living in two-places). It was not a great place to be. Now, I am somewhere else. It’s time to commit. My situation has not really changed, but what I am committed to is my research and teaching trajectory. That’s it. I trust the journey and where I am suppose to go, I will be.
I have a goal. I will tinker and play. I will discern and decide. I will get the job done.